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"The great sea has sent me adrift;
it moves me
like a reed in a great river.
Earth and the great weather move me,
have carried me away,
and fill my inward parts with joy." - Uvavnuk, an Iglulik Eskimo woman shaman

"Whenever we touch nature we get clean. People who have got dirty through too much civilization take a walk in the woods, or a bath in the sea. Entering the unconscious, entering yourself through dreams, is touching nature from the inside and this is the same thing, things are put right again." - CG Jung

Embodying Nature Retreat & Facilitator Course

September 7-17, 2017 Sea Ranch, CA

We are nature - our bodies are a microcosm of the outer landscape. In these retreats, we temporarily leave the modern world behind and immerse ourselves in the living dreamscape of our bodies and the natural world to discover more of who we are and what we can be. Tree, sky, rock, and water – all these elements reflect parts of our being that can be embodied and expressed.

Embodying Nature is a somatic-expressive practice developed by Jamie McHugh for expanding and deepening our relationship with the natural world through the preverbal languages of our body's expression. This experiential, hands-on process is simple, inclusive and easy to understand and has been taught to various groups worldwide over the past 30 years. The application of the model is as diverse as the individuals who facilitate it; Embodying Nature has been used as a foundation for performance, creative writing, environmental education and ecopsychology.

The Embodying Nature protocol combines a conceptual map to guide the exploration with specific tools and activities to immediately engage people in the sensorial experience of their surroundings. Each day begins by settling into our inner landscape with the five somatic technologies of breath, vocalization, contact, movement and stillness. Then, we move into relationship with the outer landscape by contacting, witnessing, mirroring, and responding. These somatic technologies open the portals of perception to allow the spirit of place to occupy our soma and psyche. What emerges in this encounter between our inner and outer environment is a rich, creative stream of spontaneous dances, intuitive songs, and silent contemplations that connect us more deeply to our interior and the larger body of the Earth.

In this 10-day immersion, we follow the Embodying Nature protocol together, progressing from simple to complex activities and open explorations. We then reflect on the practices and find ways to adapt them to satisfy various needs, circumstances, and constituencies.

Participants collaborate with one another to discover their own unique application of the model with the possibility of ongoing contact and online support once they return to their respective environments.

Group size is limited to 8 participants. Send an email HERE for application.

70 Contact hours can be applied to the total hours needed for independent track registry as a Somatic Movement Educator through the International Somatic Movement Education and Therapy Association (ISMETA). See guidelines HERE

Certification as an Embodying Nature guide is available with ongoing study and online supervision. Contact Jamie McHugh for more information


Tuition: $975 if registered by July 15; $1075 after (if still available)

Course begins at 3pm on September 7 and ends at 1 PM on September 17

Housing: $575

Food: Each person will bring their own food and/or shop at the local market, and collaborate with others as they wish on meals.